A KOTARA man who found himself staring down a gun barrel at work this week says he would rather talk to his alleged intimidator than see them punished.
Glen Evans felt a presence while working as a cleaner in Broadmeadow about 2am on Tuesday.
‘‘I turned around and saw a young man with a pistol point at me through the doors,’’ Mr Evans said.
‘‘I froze instantaneously.’’
Mr Evans said the pair had a brief stand-off before he reached to remove his headphones.
The youth fled the scene at that point, he said.
‘‘I was pretty scared ... I’ve never really been accustomed to weapons of any kind,’’ Mr Evans said.
‘‘I had no idea it was a replica, I thought I had a gun pointed at me.’’
Mr Evans contacted police, who found four teenagers and the pistol in a park nearby.
The 14-year-old who allegedly wielded the replica is eligible to be dealt with under the Young Offenders Act.
Mr Evans said he had returned to work on Wednesday evening for a ‘‘very touchy shift’’ and was still troubled by the incident.
‘‘I’m not a blithering mess but it has affected me,’’ he said.
But despite his scare Mr Evans said he would prefer the youth was not punished.
Instead, Mr Evans would rather meet him so they could discuss the impact the incident had on his victim.
‘‘I think [sitting down with them] is probably the more sensible of the outcomes,’’ he said.
‘‘I’d like them to get some understanding and some empathy that their behaviour can affect people in ways they don’t expect.
‘‘I think a lot of young people could benefit from that.’’